you wake up some mornings with sleep in your eye. on others . . . with a different sort of eerie hope.
the girls had been sick since the blurry had come to our town. Their little active forms had grown more limp each day.
until finally the girls had gone bed-ridden. the wife and I we just teared up . . . and grew a bit weak ourselves.
We had gone once to an old church in a quiet place. --With an old resilient pastor who had a quiet way. He was of the old-fashioned sort, who still did home visits.
. . . he'd actually come without knowing the girls were sick. but they say God works in mysterious . . . ways
he knew about the blurry. had faced it in other places. he was the sort who backed not down. neither did he quiver.
he just plodded. trodged, plodged, -- and went with a smile or gentle look in the eye.
we'd told him him we weren't very faithful attenders. ----he knew.
we'd told how our lives we're a bit of a ruckus. ------he understood.
we told him about the lady we'd had work for us for a while back. ------he listened.
---- how we'd learned she was some sort of witch . . . or whatever. He got stern, sort of battened down his hatches. something flashed in his eye
witch craft isn't something you play with, he'd said. but. . . neither is it something to fear.
we told him our girls we're in a bad way he'd asked to see them.
they were sleeping and dreaming tossing and fitting. but he saw them he never got troubled but . . .
he did drop down on one knee to pray.
when he finished he rose again. touched the cross on his chest to the lips on his face. --told us he was glad that he'd come.
neither Maudie nor I knew what to say. so we bid him farewell, and checked the twins.
they slept on the bed as lifeless as ever but . . . their fits and their stirrings had stilled.
I told my Maudie I'd never forgive myself if the girls remained that way. She wept a bit. That durn't pastor he'd quiggled the hope in us. --and hope is painful.
but we both slept better that night better indeed than we had in many cycles.
Neither of us dreamt but I did wake with some stirring. I ran outside. the sun was still waking.
and there were my girls. playin away on that swing they so loved.
and I dropped to one knee. what else could I do grateful hearts . . .
they get real real heavy. at times . . .